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All Posts in Category: Blog

Community Service

“Thank you to the participants of the Foam Roller class who recently raised and donated $250.00 towards Big Brothers and Sisters of the Georgian Triangle.”

Interested in this class? Please contact Katie for more information at or 705-467-0701.

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Foam Rolling: learn to help yourself



Foam Rolling with Katie Riddle

Foam rolling has become a popular method of soft tissue massage amongst athletes and fitness enthusiasts as it is affordable and easy to access. It is a form of Self Myofascial Release Therapy (SMRT). SMRT is a self completed therapy that is used to decrease painful trigger points. Trigger points occur when muscle tissue is overloaded by overuse and imbalance or injury. For example, running long distances with improper mechanics or ‘limping’ because of a painful knee.  These trigger points cause tightness, pain, and improper movement patterns which can potentiate a vicious cycle of symptoms, especially as we age.

Common areas of trigger points are located in the muscle tissue throughout the lower and upper body.

Although SMRT does not replace massage therapy, it is a very popular way of decreasing symptoms in addition to physiotherapy, massage therapy, or chiropractic treatment.


How is SMRT done?

By using your own body weight on a foam roller!   When a gentle, sustained pressure is applied on the soft tissues, a myofascial release can be performed resulting in softening and lengthening of the fascia and decreased trigger point sensitivity.


Why foam roll?


Pre Exercise: foam rolling can alleviate muscle tightness, increase joint range of motion, and help prevent the onset of injuries.

Post Exercise: foam rolling after exercise it may help reduce muscle soreness.


Where Can I Learn How to  Foam Roll?


Come and join us for the Foam Rolling Class at OSI !

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The Fragile Brain – handle with care

Orthopaedic Sport Institute is an official Complete Concussion Management™ clinic. Concussions have become the focus for both professional and amateur athletes around the world, and OSI will continue to be at the forefront of concussion diagnosis, management, and rehabilitation with this collaboration. We utilize a comprehensive, multi-modal approach to concussions, based on current advances in concussion research.

What is a concussion?
A concussion can be simply defined as a disruption in neurological functioning following a significant impact to the head or elsewhere on the body. This causes a biochemical imbalance within brain cells as well as decreased blood flow and temporary energy deficits within the brain.

Following a suspected concussion, a player should be immediately removed from play, assessed and placed on complete rest in order to recover from the energy deficit. Studies have shown that any activity, both mental and physical, in the immediate days following concussion can delay the process of recovery and should be avoided until the athlete is completely symptom free.

What is baseline testing?
The biggest concern surrounding concussions comes from the energy deficit that occurs in the brain following injury. When the brain is in this low energy state, it has been well established that the brain is extremely vulnerable to additional trauma, where even smaller impacts can lead to another concussion. These second concussions can cause severe brain injuries with potentially permanent or fatal outcomes.

The problem is that symptoms (meaning how someone feels) do not coincide with brain recovery. The only way to know when the brain has fully recovered and out of this “vulnerable period” is to compare current brain function to when the individual was healthy – this is what is known as a “baseline test”. Symptom recovery quite often occurs prior to brain recovery – this increases the risk of secondary brain injuries in athletes.

A baseline test is a battery of tests that measures every area of brain function that could potentially become affected following a concussion (you need more than computer tests!!). The reason that the test is termed a “baseline” is because it is done BEFORE the athlete gets injured. In order to know when an athlete has fully recovered, we first have to know where they were when they were healthy. Without having this information, there is no way to truly know when an athlete has fully recovered and is safe to return to their sport.


  • Comprehensive baseline testing
  • Post-injury diagnosis and injury management
  • Concussion rehabilitation for Post-Concussion Syndrome
  • Coach & trainer education and certification programs (online)
  • Concussion Tracker Smartphone application

Concussion Tracker Smartphone Application
Athletes and concussed patients can now log in to view their baseline test results as well as receive rehabilitation exercises, diet plans, and other recovery tips to help them along the way. The app also allows the injured patient (or their parents) to have around the clock communication with the treating clinician as well as provide an update on their symptoms and progress every single day…all from your phone.


Darryl Novotny


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Plantar Fasciitis – A Real Pain in the Foot!

Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes of heel pain. The plantar fascia is the flat band of tissue (ligament) that connects your heel bone to your toes, and supports the arch of your foot. If you strain your plantar fascia, it gets weak, swollen, and irritated or inflamed. Most people with plantar fasciitis have pain when they take their first steps after they get out of bed or after sitting for a long time.

Plantar fasciitis is common in middle-aged people, but also occurs in younger people who are on their feet a lot, such as athletes, soldiers, or even certain occupational fields. It can happen in one foot or both feet, and is caused by straining the ligament that supports your arch. Repeated strain can cause tiny tears in the ligament. This repetitive tearing can lead to pain and swelling, and is more likely to happen if:

  • your feet roll inward too much when you walk
  • you have either high arches or flat feet
  • you walk, stand, or run for long periods of time, especially on hard surfaces
  • you have tight achilles tendons or calf muscles

Common, successful treatment methods include:

  • soft tissue release and the appropriate exercises for the plantar fascia and the achilles tendons
  • custom orthotics can support the mechanics of the foot and arch to prevent irritation of the plantar fascia
  • night splints: Exercise and physiotherapy alone result in ~55% recovery rate for patients with plantar fasciitis. With the addition of a night splint, that recovery rate increases to over 85%. The splint keeps the bottom of the foot from tightening up overnight and eventually leads to less morning stiffness with your first steps.
  • shockwave therapy in stubborn cases of plantar fasciitis can be a very effective addition to your treatment plan

For further information regarding treatments and splints that are effective in combating plantar fasciitis, please contact the Orthopaedic Sport Institute at (705) 467-0701 or and ask for a consultation with one of our friendly healthcare professionals.


Darryl Novotny, BScPT, Registered Physiotherapist

Dean Woodcock, (C) R.T.O c, Certified Pedorthist

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Prepare and Prevent with Prehab

Prepare and Prevent with Prehab

As Canadians we have the pleasure of experiencing four seasons which are each accompanied by their own unique challenges. Perhaps the most challenging of seasons, especially as we age, is upon us. Winter can be a difficult time for some as it welcomes snow and ice maintenance around the home, along with unpredictable walking and driving conditions. At the same time, for many people the arrival of winter means the return of ski season, snowshoeing, pond hockey, and other outdoor activities. The associated risks of injury, whether activity, sport, or winter related can be significantly reduced or even prevented with the proper preparation. Preparation and prevention of injury is known as prehabilitation, and should be emphasized in both athletes and non-athletes alike.

“I exercise regularly at the gym, am I reducing my risk of injury?” The answer to this question depends on the amount of variety in your training, and how your workout routine correlates with your everyday movements. Whether your activities involve shoveling the driveway, playing hockey, sitting in a chair eight hours per day, or racing down a mountain on your skis, they all involve muscles that can be subsequently over and underused, and therefore prone to injury.

Imagine two muscle groups with opposite functions;  one group known as the agonists are complemented by another group of muscles, the antagonists. In a sport such as skiing, the agonist muscle group are the quadriceps due to the prolonged positions of hip flexion and variations between knee flexion and extension. The hamstrings and lower back muscles are often in a more lengthened and relaxed state relative to the quads while skiing. The two main concerns with repetitive movement and prolonged positions are the resulting weaknesses of the non-dominant muscles, and tightening of the dominant tissues due to repetitive contractions and muscle shortening.  Through self-awareness of your own active lifestyle, and through physical assessments by a trainer or therapist, the overly strengthened and underdeveloped areas can be identified and corrected . It is important to stretch muscles and tendons that may be used excessively, but sometimes more important to strengthen their counterparts that have been repetitively lengthened, relaxed, and consequently weakened.

Prehabilitation refers to the management of both joint stability and mobility in commonly problematic areas, which in turn are often based on lifestyle. A skier for example heavily emphasizes quad and core based exercises in the off-season, however accessory exercises and prehab work also require attention. Movements opposite those used in everyday activity and sport need to be developed and included in training regimens. Skiers need to shift some focus to releasing and lengthening hip flexors, while strengthening hamstrings and lower back muscles as well. This would also remain true for those with desk jobs, where extended periods of time are spent in hip flexion. Individuals can be predisposed to certain injuries based on their lifestyle and vocation. Prehab exercises serve as a proactive approach to preventing pain and injury to the vulnerable or potentially problematic areas of the body.

Take time to understand the positions and movements you perform on a daily basis. If you have a regular routine at the gym, ensure you are complementing your main movements with exercises to target the opposite muscles as well. Implement joint balancing exercises in your daily routine to maintain joint stability and mobility, and help treat the pain before it happens.

For information about exercises for injury prevention, please contact the Orthopaedic Sport Institute at (705) 467-0701 or

Jordan McCarl, H. BScKin, CSCS

Strength & Conditioning Trainer

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Personal Training at OSI


The importance of being physically active at all ages is often emphasized and arguably becomes of greater importance as we age. The Orthopaedic Sport Institute is now offering personal training in the form of private and group training to those of all ages, fitness levels, and athletic experience. The trainers at Orthopaedic Sport Institute have experience training athletes and non-athletes alike, in the younger, middle-aged, and elderly population.

Our exercise classes are available to anyone seeking to maintain or improve their health in a small group setting. The group classes promote an enjoyable, friendly, and motivating approach to exercise, while allowing everyone to push themselves at their own pace. The classes focus on all aspects of physical fitness in a functional manner that can be directly applied to everyday activities. Resistance exercise, cardiovascular training, mobility, balance, and coordination are the main focal points of the group sessions. Despite being a group session, the classes are programmed to allow individuals to scale the difficulty and intensity according to their fitness goals and abilities. An initial private assessment is conducted before joining the class to determine current fitness level, strengths and weaknesses, injuries, and individual fitness goals.

Private training is also available, where a program will be created entirely catered to the individual’s needs and goals. Our trainers are experienced in individualized program design and training those of all ages and athletic backgrounds.

For more information about our group exercise classes and private training sessions, please contact the Orthopaedic Sport Institute at (705) 467-0701 or

Jordan McCarl, H. BScKin, CSCS

Strength & Conditioning Trainer

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Exercise and Aging




“With age comes wisdom”.  “If I only knew then what I know now”.  “The Golden Years”.

There certainly are enough euphemisms that imply aging is a wonderful and fulfilling experience.  However, many are now coming to realize that as more time passes, we tend to lose more of what we truly enjoy.  Aging comes with its fair share of physical changes that can negatively impact our strength, endurance, balance and overall level of wellness and independence.

Sarcopenia occurs in all individuals – it is a loss of muscle mass with aging that typically begins in your 30’s.  This process is influenced by inactivity, hormone levels (reduction in levels of testosterone, growth hormone and insulin-like growth factor), inadequate nutrition and an inability of the body to synthesize protein.  Sarcopenia tends to accelerate between the ages of 65 and 80.

While inactivity can lead to 3-5% loss of muscle mass per decade after the age of 30, improving the volume and intensity of your activity can help to minimize that loss.   How can you specifically combat this process?

Exercise. Exercise. Exercise.

Resistance training has been reported to positively influence the neuromuscular system, hormone concentrations, and protein synthesis rate. Research has shown that a program of progressive resistance training exercises can increase protein synthesis rates in older adults in as little as two weeks.

The good news is muscle mass can increase at any age in response to exercise. In an important study of weight lifting and older adults conducted with residents of a nursing home in Boston (average age 87), subjects lifted weights with their legs three times a week for 10 weeks. At the end of the study, there was an increase in thigh mass of 2.7%, walking speed increased 12%, and leg strength increased 113%!

For further information regarding group exercise programs and individual personal training sessions that are effective in combating sarcopenia, please contact the Orthopaedic Sport Institute at (705) 467-0701 or and ask for a consultation with one of our friendly healthcare professionals.

Darryl Novotny, BScPT

Registered Physiotherapist

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Pregnancy Massage


pregnancy 2

Are you pregnant and having issues with your back, leg cramping, or headaches?  Eden Wild, one of our massage therapists, is offering a way for pregnant woman to manage their issues with a pregnancy massage.  Let Eden help you unwind and relax.   We also offer gift certificates  if you are looking for a great gift for the mother to be.

Why Massage?

Massage therapy performed during a mother’s pregnancy can help relieve muscle soreness, swelling and joint pain.  Studies have also shown massages can help to reduce stress hormones (cortisol and norepinephrine) and help increase “feel good” hormones (seratonin and dopamine).

To book an appointment please call  the Orthopaedic Sport Institute at (705) 467-0701, or book right from our website and one of our administration staff will help you.

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